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Al Shahania Stud notch two homebred Listed winners within half an hour

Maiden scorer makes it a treble at Toulouse for the Qatar-owned operation

Vorda (left): Cheveley Park Stakes winner is the dam of Saiga
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Al Shahania Stud was in red hot form at Toulouse as French racing returned after lockdown on Monday, with its homebreds notching a Listed race double.

Sheikh Mohammed bin Khalifa Al Thani's operation was responsible for Saiga, who won the Prix Caravelle over ten and a half furlongs for three-year-old fillies, and Usak, who won the Prix Aymeri de Mauleon over a mile for three-year-olds.

Saiga, who was sent out by Philippe Sogorb to win by a length from the Sea The Moon filly Moon A Lisa, had won a maiden at Tarbes by three lengths last year but was fifth in a Pornichet conditions race on her three-year-old bow in March.

By Teofilo – and an 88th stakes winner for the Kildangan Stud stalwart – she is the second foal out of Al Shahania Stud's top-class racemare Vorda, whose career was also overseen by Sogorb.

The nine-year-old daughter of Orpen won the Prix Robert Papin and Cheveley Park Stakes at two, and also split No Nay Never and Rizeena when finishing second in the Prix Morny that season.

Vorda did not win again at three, but she did run a short neck second in the Prix Imprudence and was not beaten far when fifth in the Prix Maurice de Gheest and fourth in the Prix de la Foret.

The mare's first foal, the Frankel four-year-old colt Markhor, won over seven furlongs at Dax last year and is now plying his trade in Qatar. She also has a two-year-old filly by Invincible Spirit and a yearling colt by Iffraaj.

Usak, a stablemate of Saiga, completed the homebred black-type double for Al Shahania Stud just half an hour later by beating the Night Of Thunder colt Thunderspeed a length into second.

The gelding is by Al Kazeem, John Deer's four-time Group 1 winner by Dubawi who has been strongly supported by Al Shahania Stud in his stud career.

The Qatari outfit bred and owned the sire's first stakes winner Aspetar, who is one of the few foals who resulted from Al Kazeem's aborted spell at the Royal Studs at Sandringham when it was found he was subfertile. The five-year-old struck at the highest level in Germany for Roger Charlton last year.

Usak, the sire's second stakes winner, is from Al Kazeem's second crop – the first conceived at Deer's Oakgrove Stud in Chepstow, where the sire nowadays covers carefully managed books.

Usak is the first foal out of Qatari Elegance, a placed daughter of Magnificent Honour, an A.P. Indy sister to four-time Grade 1 heroine Rags To Riches and a half-sister to Jazil, who like Rags To Riches took the Belmont Stakes.

Qatari Elegance also has a Le Havre yearling filly. Astonishingly Zied Romdhane was able to buy her for just €27,000 at last year's Arqana December Breeding-Stock Sale in foal to German Derby winner and popular young Lanwades Stud sire Sea The Moon.

Romdhane can celebrate not just a highly significant update from Usak, but also from Sea The Moon, who has started the year off in excellent fashion. He has supplied impressive Cologne Classic winner Wonderful Moon, Park Express Stakes runner-up Hamariyna, Prix de la Grotte third Tickle Me Green and the aforementioned Moon A Lisa.

Sea The Moon has also been on the mark with Cologne maiden winner Sea Of Love as well as the Tattersalls-sourced Shepard, who gave Peter Moody a winner with his first runner upon returning to training in Australia on Sunday.

As if the Listed double for Al Shahania Stud was not enough, the organisation made it three homebred winners in a row at Toulouse when The Shard struck in the mile maiden for three-year-olds that immediately followed Saiga and Usak's Listed contests.

The Shard, a colt also trained by Sogorb and getting off the mark at the fourth attempt, is by Pivotal out of Tarap, a Myboycharlie half-sister to dual US Grade 1 winner Amorama and to the dam of top-class racemare Odeliz.


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Astonishingly Zied Romdhane was able to buy the dam of Usak for just €27,000 at last year's Arqana December Breeding-Stock Sale

Key data

Usak Saiga
E.W. Terms